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Isaiah 52:7

    Isaiah 52:7 Translations

    King James Version (KJV)

    How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace; that bringeth good tidings of good, that publisheth salvation; that saith unto Zion, Thy God reigneth!

    American King James Version (AKJV)

    How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of him that brings good tidings, that publishes peace; that brings good tidings of good, that publishes salvation; that said to Zion, Your God reigns!

    American Standard Version (ASV)

    How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace, that bringeth good tidings of good, that publisheth salvation, that saith unto Zion, Thy God reigneth!

    Basic English Translation (BBE)

    How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of him who comes with good news, who gives word of peace, saying that salvation is near; who says to Zion, Your God is ruling!

    Webster's Revision

    How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace, that bringeth good tidings of good, that publisheth salvation, that saith unto Zion, Thy God reigneth!

    World English Bible

    How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of him who brings good news, who publishes peace, who brings good news of good, who publishes salvation, who says to Zion, "Your God reigns!"

    English Revised Version (ERV)

    How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace, that bringeth good tidings of good, that publisheth salvation; that saith unto Zion, Thy God reigneth!

    Clarke's Commentary on Isaiah 52:7

    How beautiful - The watchmen discover afar off, on the mountains, the messenger bringing the expected and much-wished-for news of the deliverance from the Babylonish captivity. They immediately spread the joyful tidings, Isaiah 52:8, and with a loud voice proclaim that Jehovah is returning to Zion, to resume his residence on his holy mountain, which for some time he seemed to have deserted. This is the literal sense of the place.

    "How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of the joyful messenger," is an expression highly poetical: for, how welcome is his arrival! how agreeable are the tidings which he brings!

    Nahum, Nahum 1:15, who is generally supposed to have lived after Isaiah, has manifestly taken from him this very pleasing image; but the imitation does not equal the beauty of the original: -

    "Behold upon the mountain the feet of the joyful messenger,

    Of him that announceth peace!

    Celebrate, O Judah, thy festivals; perform thy vows:

    For no more shall pass through thee the wicked one;

    He is utterly cut off."

    But it must at the same time be observed that Isaiah's subject is infinitely more interesting and more sublime than that of Nahum; the latter denounces the destruction of the capital of the Assyrian empire, the most formidable enemy of Judah; the ideas of the former are in their full extent evangelical; and accordingly St. Paul has, with the utmost propriety, applied this passage to the preaching of the Gospel, Romans 10:15. The joyful tidings here to be proclaimed, "Thy God, O Zion, reigneth, "are the same that John the Baptist, the messenger of Christ, and Christ himself, published: "The kingdom of heaven is at hand."

    From the use made of this by our Lord and the apostles, we may rest assured that the preachers of the Gospel are particularly intended. Mountains are put for the whole land of Judea, where the Gospel was first preached. There seems to be an allusion to a battle fought, and the messengers coming to announce the victory, which was so decisive that a peace was the consequence, and the king's throne established in the land.

    There appear to have been two sorts of messengers among the Jews: one sort always employed to bring evil tidings; the other to bring good. The names also and persons of these different messengers appear to have been well known; so that at a distance they could tell, from seeing the messenger, what sort of tidings he was bringing. See a case in point, 2 Samuel 18:19-27 (note). Ahimaaz and Cushi running to bring tidings of the defeat of Absalom and his rebel army. Ahimaaz is a Good man and bringeth Good tidings.

    Barnes' Notes on Isaiah 52:7

    How beautiful upon the mountains - This passage is applied by Paul to the ministers of the gospel (see Romans 10:15). The meaning here seems to be this: Isaiah was describing the certain return of the Jews to their own land. He sees in vision the heralds announcing their return to Jerusalem running on the distant hills. A herald bearing good news is a beautiful object; and he says that his feet are beautiful; that is, his running is beautiful. He came to declare that the long and painful captivity was closed, and that the holy city and its temple were again to rise with splendor, and that peace and plenty and joy were to be spread over the land. Such a messenger coming with haste, the prophet says, would be a beautiful object. Some have supposed (see Campbell on the Gospels, Diss. v. p. 11, Section 3, 4), that the idea here is, that the feet of messengers when they traveled in the dust were naturally offensive and disgusting, but that the messenger of peace and prosperity to those who had been oppressed and afflicted by the ravages of war, was so charming as to transform a most disagreeable into a pleasing object.

    But I cannot see any such allusion here. It is true that the feet of those who had traveled far in dry and dusty roads would present a spectacle offensive to the beholder; and it is true also, as Dr. Campbell suggests, that the consideration that they who were coming were messengers of peace and safety would convert deformity into beauty, and make us behold with delight this indication of their embassy. But it seems to me that this passage has much higher beauty. The idea in the mind of the prophet is not, that the messenger is so near that the sordid appearance of his feet could be seen. The beholder is supposed to be standing amidst the ruins of the desolated city, and the messenger is seen running on the distant hills. The long anticipated herald announcing that these ruins are to rise, at length appears. Seen on the distant hills, running rapidly, he is a beautiful object. It is his feet, his running, his haste, that attracts attention; an indication that he bears a message of joy, and that the nation is about to be restored. Nahum, who is supposed to have lived after Isaiah, has evidently copied from him this beautiful image:

    Behold upon the mountains the feet of the joyful messenger,

    Of him that announceth peace;

    Celebrate, O Judah, thy festivals; perform thy vows;

    For no more shall pass through thee the wicked one;

    He is utterly cut off.

    Wesley's Notes on Isaiah 52:7

    52:7 The mountains - Of Judea, to which these glad tidings were brought, and from which they were spread abroad into other countries. Of him - Or, of them; the singular number being put for the plural. Returneth - In the days of the Messiah, God did discover and exercise his dominion over the world far more eminently than ever he had done from the beginning of the world until that time.